UCAN Spirituality Catholic Church News
Happy Easter to all

Patience

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Henri Nouwen

A waiting person is a patient person. The word patience means the willingness to stay where we are and live the situation out to the full in the belief that something hidden there will manifest itself to us.”

  

Pierre Teilhard de Chardin

Above all, trust in the slow work of God.
We are quite naturally impatient in everything
to reach the end without delay.
We should like to skip the intermediate stages.
We are impatient of being on the way to something
unknown, something new.
And yet it is the law of all progress
that it is made by passing through
some stages of instability—
and that it may take a very long time.
And so I think it is with you;
your ideas mature gradually—let them grow,
let them shape themselves, without undue haste.
Don’t try to force them on,
as though you could be today what time
(that is to say, grace and circumstances
acting on your own good will)
will make of you tomorrow.
Only God could say what this new spirit
gradually forming within you will be.
Give Our Lord the benefit of believing
that his hand is leading you,
and accept the anxiety of feeling yourself
in suspense and incomplete.

 

Tenzin Norbu

Patience is the Mahayana Buddhist virtue that overcomes anger. According to this religious point of view, an angry mind is the result of ignorance, and when we act out of anger, we always cause ourselves spiritual harm. We often harm others when we act out of anger, but we always harm ourselves. So, from this spiritual perspective, we need to eliminate anger from our minds. We do this not by suppressing our anger, but by eliminating the ignorant way we conceive of those persons and things that cause us to become angry. Suppressing anger can cause psychological problems, but eliminating the causes of anger always results in psychological and spiritual health.

We become angry because of a deluded view we have of ourselves and the persons or things toward which our anger is directed. The deluded view, in general, is that the world consists of independent, discreet objects, which we divide into ourselves and others. We think that each of these things has an identifiable nature, but this is not the case; we are simply projecting onto an ever-changing reality, a world made up of what we think are permanent things with permanent characteristics. When we become angry, we are viewing a thing as permanently bad and hateful by nature – it is as if this thing is pervaded by badness. We also project the characteristic of being “permanently me” onto a collection of body parts and mental states that is continually changing. We vigorously defend our sense of having a permanent self and become angry with anything we view as causing harm to this self.